14 May 2006

Return of the Quinoa

Quinoa is making a big return in this house. I have been tired of eating brown rice, white rice, wild rice (which is niether wild nor rice, thanks Ms. Dixon!). I wasn't feeling like much of an experiment and I am saving another quinoa recipe that's cold for a lunch meal, not dinner. I decided that since my stir-fry's consist of throwing a bunch of on-hand ingredients into a wok, heating it up, and calling it "dinner", I would do the same as I normally do, but with quinoa.
This meal was jam-packed with complete protiens, as quinoa is the only grain with whole complete protiens. This quinoa stir-fry tasted like many others I make, but I had to toss the remaining onion that I had since it went bad. One thing you know about organic produce as that it doesn't last as long as the contaminated "conventional" ones. I'd rather have organic than conventional any day. My quinoa is even organic, as is the tofu, woo hoo!

Leslie's Quinoa Stir-Fry:
quinoa (rinsed, drained and cooked like rice but for only 15 minutes), tofu, carrots, broccoli, red yellow and green bell peppers, fresh ginger, garlic, tamari, hoisin sauce, peanut butter, chili flakes, splash of oilve oil, cashews and gamashio (sea veggies) for appealing toppings.

For those out there who don't know what quinoa is or looks like, well, here's what it look like once it's cooked. It is deceiving like rice as it plumps up quite a bit from when it's dry. With quinoa, you want to use 1 cup of water for every 1/2 cup dry quinoa and you must remember to rinse the bitter saponens off before cooking. Quinoa is a bit nutty plain, and is pretty comprable to rice (usage-wise). And like Dreena, I love those little "tails" on them. That's it, nothing exciting, really just a variation on what I always do. I promise you all good stuff coming up. I was going to make a guac dish or something with avocado (hint hint, Miriam!), but I decided that I'm going to mash the avocado and put it on my face/skin instead for a super-mask-treatment. Plus, I want to freak Ray out!


raising_kahne said...

yumm. That looks delicious! I swear, you are soo good at "throwing" stuff together and making an awesome meal! When I try that, it usually doesnt end up half as good as yours! Your tofu looks awesome too! I bought my first package of tofu yesterday, and Im debating on what to make with it((since Im pretty clueless and have never even seen tofu except in pics)). Any suggestions on what to make that's easy and delicious??

laura said...

I really like quinoa as a hot breakfast cereal stirred up with PB, dried apple, agave nectar, and a dash of cinnamon.

It sticks to my ribs a lot longer than oatmeal ever does!

EatPeacePlease said...

Raising Kahne, did you buy aseptic tofu, tofu packed in water, or baked tofu? Also, is it firm or soft? With soft/silken you can make dips, sauces, smoothies, soups, etc. With firm or baked you can make stir-fry which is super-easy, just marinate the tofu in tamari and other sauces that you like and heat it up. You can also bake it, make a sandwich with it (as a meat replacer) or crumble it up and make a quick tofu scramble! You can throw some soft/silken in a blender with fruit and make a smoothie. I like making soft tofu with cocoa and sugar to make pudding. That takes 5 minutes to make and an hour to chill in the fridge. Thanks for your nice comments, let me know if you have questions or tell me how your tofu experience was.

Laura, that breakfast quinoa sounds awesome! Actually, I told Ray that I think I was still stuffed this morning after our coffee from last night's meal! Tofu and quinoa is quite the protien powerhouse (minus my treats).

Anonymous said...

I just recently heard about quinoa and decided to try it based on all it's crazy health benefits. I love the stuff and justify eating it all the time because I have to make up for never having it for the first 18 years of my life. Although I've only had white quinoa once, because my cafeteria here at school always has the red version. I wonder if there is much difference. Anyways I'm rambling and your quinoa dish looks amazing. I think it might be my first meal once I'm home on Saturday from college (no more dorm food ever- YAY). Either that or the sloppy lentil quinoa dish you made earlier. So please, keep post all the quinoa dishes that you make- because I love it!

To raising Kahne- good luck with your fist tofu cooking experience. I just want to say that if it doesn't turn out how you expected that you shouldn't be dissapointed. Keep trying different ways until you find a style that you like!


Catherine said...

I really have to make some quinoa soon!

Anonymous said...

I've got quinoa in the cupboard and never make it. tsk tsk...I just need to do it and I'll probably start a habit cause it looks amazing here.

Freedom said...

I just discovered quinoa a few months back and now I'm loving it! I never have rice anymore, its always quinoa. Yum, yum, yum.

EatPeacePlease said...

Teresa, I've only just recently seen red/brown quinoa online. I only find the white variety here, although it is organic. I wish there was quinoa when I ate in cafeterias! wow! Congrats on soon having no more dorm food, where are you at school?!?

Catherine, yes, you have to make some quinoa soon. Then add it to your cookbook.

Megan the Vegan, having the name you have and not eating quinoa (yet)?!? Better get together with Catherine and GO MAKE SOME!!! It really is awesome and while eating I'm always thinking about all the nutritional benefits.

Freedom, I've been weaning off the rice as well, although there's nothing wrong with it. Quinoa is just loaded with awesome!

KaiVegan said...

Yes, the beloved quinoa...

Lately I've been cooking it with diced carrots, red bell pepper and spinach. Hey, the kids eat them! I even made some today.

Onions never go bad around here since I use them for almost every dish. But I remember that you don't like onions! That figures why they would go bad. (I also read somewhere that they go bad pretty fast when stored next to potatoes.)

Your stir-fry looks awesome as usual.

Anonymous said...

Hey Leslie- don't let the fact that occasionally my cafeteria has quinoa, fool you. I will admit that its probably better than most colleges, but after 2 years I'm sick of it. By the way I'm at the University of San Francisco, but I'm originaly from southern california- where I'll be back home in 5 days and counting!

Even though I've only had white quinoa once, I think that I like the red quinoa better. But who knows- maybe they taste the same. I definitely suggest trying some other variations. I myself am going to beg the managers of our caf. to let me buy a bag of it uncooked so that I can take it home- where I too have only found white quinoa. OK I've rambled on too long now- just hope that everyone can appreciate quinoa as much as you do.


Patty said...

After checking your blog the other day, I had to make some quinoa for our evening meal. I made red curry coconut quinoa with broc and red peppers.
You should write down your creations in the kitchen and write a cookbook.

Catherine said...

I'll have to stock up on more stir-fry veggies this weekend and make some quinoa for a base!

You've started me thinking about which recipes I could add quinoa to in the cookbook! (Chili seems like an obvious pairing!)

Vicki said...

I *heart* quinoa! You've got me craving it now...& especially with your stir-fry. How did your avocado super-mask-treatment go?! Did Ray freak?

Miriam said...

What are you doing wasting avocado on your face??? You have sinned!

The stirfry looks great. I've really bee into veggie stirfries lately.

Carrie™ said...

I got a magazine in the mail today that has a lot of rhubarb recipes in it. I immediately thought of you! There was one for a crumble that sounded good (and was vegan) Do you still have rhubarb? I could shoot that one your way.

EatPeacePlease said...

Kai, it's so nice to hear your children love quinoa (and so much other good stuff). As for the onions, I do like the flavor, and them cut small, but not big chunks. It wasn't missing anything to me.

Teresa, I'm still scoutin' out red quinoa. Is there a special name for it?

Patty, thanks for the cookbook idea, although I have so many ideas, right now a cookbook sounds overwhelming. I'd like to see a photo of your quinoa dish sometime. Thanks for your nice comments, as always.

Catherine, you can probably sub quinoa with almost any grain in your cookbook. You should write some recipes with quinoa or suggest it for a rice/pasta variation.

Vicki, can you get quinoa on your vacation? Your beach house is wonderful! Your cold quinoa salad inspired me a bit on this meal! And no, I didn't scare Ray, I brought the avocado in the shower with me (weird, yes!).

Miriam, I know if it's not in your tum you are wasting avocado. In my case, my face and hair needed a major treatment and avocado is the rescue. The whole time though, I kept thinking of your avocado in the baked potato, mmm. Thanks for commenting, I've missed you (and your sarcasm!).

Carrie, is it the new Vegetarian Times? I found a wonderful flummery in there. I don't have rhubarb any more, and it may be a bit of a while before I am inspired to buy it again (unless it's still 1/2 off). Is the crumble baked?

Carrie™ said...

It was a magazine called Taste of Home. My friend thought I might like it. But, yes, it's baked. Sorry, I forgot out your oven issues.